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College Baseball:
Raptor of the Week: Matt Ulmer

Monday, May 2, 2005

By Mike Ballard
RutgersCamden Sports Correspondent

Matt Ulmer (Beverly, NJ/Holy Cross)

Senior ace Matt Ulmer earns his second Raptor of the Week honor this season after breaking a 45-year-old baseball record for career wins at Rutgers-Camden. Ulmer tossed an eight-hitter, walking one and striking out seven, in a 2-1 victory at Richard Stockton College April 29. He didn’t allow an earned run as he posted his 18th career victory, breaking the mark of 17 set by Gar Miller (1957-60). Ulmer, who also earned Raptor of the Week honors on April 11, raised his record to 6-0 and lowered his ERA to 2.98.

SOFTBALL (31-3/12-2 NJAC)

Mon., Apr. 25 Rutgers-Camden 0-2, Montclair State University 1-1 (first game eight innings)
Tues., Apr. 26 Rutgers-Camden 4-2, The College of New Jersey 1-6
Sun., May 1 at William Paterson University , ppd. to May 2


Mon., May 2 at William Paterson University, 3:30 p.m.
May 5-7 NJAC Championships at Rutgers-Camden
May 5 #4 seed at Rutgers-Camden (#1), 1 p.m.
#3 seed at #2 seed, 3:30 p.m.
May 6 TBA
May 7 TBA

The Lady Raptors softball team continued setting standards for excellence in Rutgers-Camden athletics with a pair of new accomplishments last week. On April 26, the Raptors split a New Jersey Athletic Conference doubleheader at The College of New Jersey and became the first team in school history to clinch a regular-season NJAC championship. They will host the NJAC playoffs beginning May 5.

A year ago the softball team became one of only two programs to win the NJAC championship through the playoffs, joining the 2003 women’s basketball team.

On April 27, the Lady Raptors climbed to No. 2 in the National Fastpitch Coaches Association Division III Top 25, marking the highest position any Rutgers-Camden team has ever had in a national poll.

Also off the field, sophomore catcher Mo Baney (Deptford, NJ/Deptford) earned honors as the NJAC and ECAC Division III Metro Player of the Week.

On the field, the Lady Raptors saw their school-record 26-game winning streak snapped April 25 when they split a doubleheader at NJAC foe Montclair State. They lost the opener, 1-0 in eight innings, and won the nightcap, 2.-1. They also split a doubleheader at No. 21 The College of New Jersey April 26 (a 4-1 win and a 6-2 loss) and watched a twinbill get postponed twice over the weekend at William Paterson University. It will be played Monday, May 2, before the NJAC playoffs begin May 5 in Camden.

Rutgers-Camden clinched its first regular-season NJAC title in the doubleheader split at TCNJ. The Lady Raptors won the opening game, 4-1, as junior pitcher Michelle Schlichtig (Barrington, NJ/Haddon Heights) tied her own single-season program record for victories, and lost the nightcap, 6-2.

Ramapo College helped the Raptors clinch by splitting with William Paterson the same day, winning the nightcap, 5-0, after losing the opener, 4-1.

In the opening game, Schlichtig walked three and struck out seven as she raised her record to 23-1, tying the single-season school mark for wins she set last season, when she went 23-8. She hurled a four-hitter and didn’t allow a run until the bottom of the seventh, when TCNJ scored on a one-out single by junior first baseman Kelly Quigley.

The Lady Raptors scored all the runs they needed in a three-run second inning, sparked by a leadoff walk from sophomore right fielder Autumn Millett (Richwood, NJ/Clearview Regional). Senior center fielder Becky Johnson (Bridgeton, NJ/Cumberland Regional) reached on an error and Baney delivered a run-scoring double. After a walk to freshman first baseman Kathleen Dreitlein (Berkeley Heights, NJ/Governor Livingston) loaded the bases, sophomore third baseman Alaina Giles (Willingboro, NJ/Holy Cross) delivered a two-run single to right.

The Raptors added their final run in the top of the seventh when Giles walked, advanced to third on an error and scored on a fielder’s choice by senior shortstop Celeste Chinappi (Bellmawr, NJ/Gloucester Catholic). Chinappi, who went 0-for-3 in the game, had her 13-game hitting streak snapped.

TCNJ broke Schlichtig’s bid for her record-tying 11th shutout of the season by scoring its seventh-inning run. Senior second baseman Cristina Venetucci hit a leadoff single and advanced to third on a walk and a sacrifice. She scored on Quigley’s single.

Freshman second baseman Jayme Feriod (Glassboro, NJ/Glassboro) went 2-for-4 for the Raptors.

In the nightcap, TCNJ had two-run innings in the second, third and seventh. That helped the Lions overcome a 1-0 deficit produced by Schlichtig’s solo homer to right-center field in the first inning. It was her team-leading eighth home run.

TCNJ took the lead for good in the second inning following a leadoff double by sophomore southpaw Jess Kohut. Sophomore right fielder Kristin Boyer walked and was erased on a fielder’s choice by Venetucci. Venetucci stole second and went to third when a single by sophomore shortstop Erin Cusmano plated Kohut. Quigley’s grounder to second plated Venetucci.

Trailing, 4-1, the Raptors scored their other run in the fourth on a bases-loaded walk to freshman left fielder Kim Faust (Erial, NJ/Timber Creek).

Kohut, Cusmano and senior left fielder Kristen Zimmerman each went 2-for-4 for the Lions, while Schlichtig was 2-for-4 for the Raptors.

Kohut (11-7) hurled a four-hitter, walking three and fanning 10. Johnson (8-2) took the loss for Rutgers-Camden.

A day earlier in Little Falls, senior center fielder Joelle Fata scored the only run of the game on a wild pitch in the eighth inning as the Montclair State University softball team ended the 26-game winning streak of Rutgers-Camden, 1-0, in the opening game of an NJAC doubleheader.

The Lady Raptors bounced back to win the nightcap, 2-1.

In the first game, the two teams battled through seven scoreless innings in a pitchers’ duel between the Raptors’ Schlichtig and Red Hawk junior Athanasia Totaro. In the eighth, Fata was placed on second base under tie-breaker rules, and advanced to third on a sacrifice bunt by Totaro. After a pair of intentional walks to load the bases, Fata scored on a wild pitch.

Totaro hurled eight innings of four-hit ball to raise her record to 13-3. She walked three and struck out seven. Schlichtig suffered her first loss of the season, falling to 21-1, despite allowing no earned runs. She walked six (two intentionally) and struck out 13 in a three-hit performance over 7-1/3 innings.

Schlichtig also went 2-for-3 at the plate as the lone player in the game to collect multiple hits.

The loss was the first for the Lady Raptors since a 4-2 defeat by York College on March 11 at the Sea Gull Classic in Salisbury, MD. Since that time, the Raptors had reeled off a school-record 26-game winning streak while climbing to No. 5 in the Division III national poll.

In the nightcap, Rutgers-Camden returned to its winning ways behind the combined three-hit pitching effort of Johnson and Schlichtig. Johnson worked the first three innings, allowing all three hits, two walks and one earned run. She struck out two.

Schlichtig hurled four no-hit innings in relief, walking one and striking out seven.

The Raptors took a 1-0 lead in the first inning after Schlichtig hit a leadoff single and advanced to second on a base hit by Chinappi. The runners advanced on a ground out and Johnson plated the run with a sacrifice fly to extend her program career record to 95 RBIs.

Montclair State tied the game in the top of the third inning when Totaro hit a one-out single, advanced on a single by senior DP Nicole Pacicco and scored on a single to center by senior third baseman Kari McDonnell.

Rutgers-Camden scored the winning run in the bottom of the third after a leadoff single by Schlichtig, who went 4-for-6 on the day. Faust pinch-ran for Schlichtig and moved to third on a double by Chinappi. Faust scored on a wild pitch by Totaro, who took the loss to fall to 13-4. She worked four innings, allowing six hits, two earned runs and one walk, while fanning three.

In addition to Schlichtig’s 2-for-3 game, Dreitlein also went 2-for-3 for the Lady Raptors.

BASEBALL (27-9/10-6)

Tues., Apr. 26 Rutgers-Camden 9, Catholic University 4
Thur., Apr. 28 Rowan University 5, Rutgers-Camden 1
Fri., Apr. 29 Rutgers-Camden 2, Richard Stockton College 1
Sun., May 1 Rutgers-Camden 11-3, Ramapo College 5-1


May 4 NJAC Playoffs at campus sites

Game 1: #6 at #1, 3:30 p.m.
Game 2: #5 at #2, 3:30 p.m.
Game 3: #4 at #3, 3:30 p.m.

May 6-8 NJAC Championships at Rutgers-Camden (Campbell’s Field)
May 6 TBA
May 7 TBA
May 8 TBA

The Rutgers-Camden baseball team geared up for the NJAC playoffs with a 4-1 week, including a 3-1 record in conference play and a record-breaking performance by senior ace Matt Ulmer (Beverly, NJ/Holy Cross), who set a program record with his 18th career victory. Ulmer’s milestone win, which broke a 45-year-old record, came in a 2-1 victory at Richard Stockton College April 29. The Raptors also defeated Catholic University, 9-4 (April 26 on Senior Night), lost 5-1 at Rowan (April 28) and swept a home doubleheader against Ramapo May 1 by scores of 11-5 and 3-1.

In the sweep over Ramapo, sophomore Jason Ronca (Eastampton, NJ/Rancocas Valley) and freshman Andrew Lihotz (Philadelphia, PA/Northeast) each worked five innings to pick up victories. Freshman second baseman Dean Straga (Mullica Hill, NJ/Clearview Regional) went 2-for-4 in each game as Rutgers-Camden ended its regular season with an NJAC sweep in a long twinbill, which didn’t start until 5:30 p.m. due to an afternoon Camden Riversharks game. The doubleheader ended at 11:28 p.m.

With the victories, the Scarlet Raptors improved to 27-9 overall and 10-6 in the NJAC as they await their seeding in the upcoming conference playoffs, which begin at campus sites Wednesday. The Raptors could finish third or fourth, depending on the results of the Kean University at Rowan University doubleheader May 2, which closes the regular season.

Ramapo College, meanwhile, was eliminated from the six-team NJAC field with the doubleheader loss. The Roadrunners closed the season at 15-19 overall and 5-11 in the conference.

In the three-hour opening game, the two teams combined for 24 hits, 13 walks, a hit batsman and five errors. Rutgers-Camden took a 3-0 lead after two innings and never trailed as Ronca raised his record to 5-2. He worked five innings, allowing eight hits, three earned runs, three walks and one strikeout.

Ramapo senior starter Pat Tuthill allowed six hits and two walks in 3-2/3 innings, striking out one. Only one of the six runs he allowed was earned, as he was victimized by four of the five Roadrunner errors.

Freshman hurler Chris Stanisce relieved Tuthill and did a fine job to let his team climb back into the game, shutting down the Scarlet Raptors while his team rallied to within a 7-5 deficit through six innings. Rutgers-Camden finally broke the game open with two-run frames in both the seventh and eighth innings.

In addition to Straga, who went 2-for-4 with one run and one RBI, senior left fielder Ed McDonnell (Marlton, NJ/Cherokee), junior shortstop Brian Jakubowski (Audubon, NJ/Audubon) and sophomore center fielder Nate Buchter (Blackwood, NJ/Highland Regional) each had two hits for the Raptors. McDonnell added two RBIs, while Buchter scored three runs. Jakubowski also collected eight assists.

For Ramapo, senior center fielder Aaron Eyler went 4-for-5 with one run, while junior left fielder Jon Westerfield went 3-for-6 with one RBI. Junior designated hitter Joe Rivisto went 2-for-3 before leaving the game after a collision at first base. Senior catcher Doug Aday went 2-for-5 with two RBIs.

In the nightcap, Lihotz improved his record to 2-0, allowing five hits, four walks and one earned run in five innings. He struck out three in winning a duel over Ramapo freshman Joseph Coppage, who worked 3-1/3 inning, allowing two hits, three walks and three earned runs to fall to 1-2.

Rutgers-Camden took a 1-0 lead in the third inning, thanks to the hustle of sophomore DH Mike Morris (Sewell, NJ/Washington Township), who walked and then raced all the way to third base on a wild pitch. He scored on a ground out by freshman right fielder Joe Midili (Sewell, NJ/Washington Township).

Ramapo tied the game in the top of the fourth on an RBI single by sophomore shortstop Gary Miller, but Morris doubled home a pair of runs in the bottom of the frame for the final score.

Rutgers-Camden senior closer Matt Novella (Lindenwold, NJ/Overbrook Regional) worked a perfect ninth inning, striking out one, to extend his single-season program record with his ninth save. He also extended his career records with his 62nd appearance and 13th save.

Miller and freshman infielder Chris Somjen each went 2-for-4 in the nightcap for Ramapo.

Straga, with another 2-for-4 game, was the lone Raptor with multiple hits, as Rutgers-Camden collected only four hits off the combination of Coppage and senior Angel Navarrete. Straga also had a pair of stolen bases and collected six assists at second base.

Ulmer’s record-setting performance came on an eight-hitter with one walk and seven strikeouts against Richard Stockton April 29. The lone run he surrendered was unearned as he helped the Raptors lock up a berth in the upcoming six-team NJAC playoffs.

Ulmer raised his record to 6-0 and lowered his ERA to 2.98 as he hurled his third complete game of the season, allowing one walk and only one unearned run. With his 18th win, he passed a 45-year-old program record of 17 career wins, set by Gar Miller from 1957-1960.

Ulmer had to be sharp in a pitchers’ duel against Stockton freshman Amit Shah. Shah hurled a two-hitter with six strikeouts and one walk. One of the two runs he allowed was unearned as his record fell to 5-4.

Rutgers-Camden collected its only hits in the sixth inning following a one-out walk to Straga. He stole second and advanced to third on a passed ball. He scored on a single by Jakubowski, who advanced to second base when Shah made an error on the return throw to the infield. Jakubowski then scored on a single by McDonnell

Stockton bounced back with its lone run in the bottom of the sixth following a one-out single by senior first baseman Chris Freihaut. He went to second on a single by junior second baseman Ross Karrer and advanced to third on a fielder’s choice. Freihaut scored on a two-out infield throwing error.

Ulmer allowed only one hit over the final 3-2/3 innings to wrap up his record-setting victory.

Rowan University freshman southpaw Joe Cichy hurled no-hit ball for 6-1/3 innings and finished with a two-hitter over 8-2/3 innings as the Profs defeated Rutgers-Camden, 5-1, in an NJAC game April 28 in Glassboro.

Cichy (7-0) was in charge throughout the game as he helped the Profs avenge a 5-2 loss at Rutgers-Camden on April 8, when Rowan was ranked No. 1 and sported a 16-0 record. Cichy didn’t allow a hit until Buchter poked a one-out opposite-field single to left in the seventh inning.

The Rowan freshman should have finished with a one-hit shutout, but a fielding error with two outs in the ninth inning on a ball hit by Buchter helped the Raptors stay alive. Following a walk to senior DH Dustin Roach (Marlton, NJ/Cherokee) and a single by Midili, Buchter scored on a wild pitch to break the shutout.

Following a walk to junior catcher Nick Turekian (Cherry Hill, NJ/Cherry Hill East), Rowan sophomore Tyler Dempsey relieved Cichy and earned his first save with a fielder’s choice grounder.

Cichy had to be sharp as he locked in a tight pitchers’ duel with Rutgers-Camden junior Tom Ford (Laurel Springs, NJ/Paul VI) throughout the game. Rowan scored a pair of runs in the first inning – one of them unearned – and held that 2-0 lead until they tacked on a pair of runs with two outs in the seventh inning.

In the opening frame, junior third baseman Matt Enuco had a one-out single and raced to third on a double by senior catcher Michael Rucci . Senior first baseman Irv McFarland hit a sacrifice fly and also reached base when the ball was dropped for an error. Rucci scored when the next batter, junior Jesse Pappler topped a grounder down the first base line and was retired by Ford, unassisted.

With both pitchers in control, the game remained 2-0 until the seventh when Enuco had a leadoff single and Pappler added a two-out RBI double to right. Senior right fielder Bryan Ciconte followed with an RBI single to left.

Junior left fielder Jim Comprelli hit a leadoff double in the eighth and scored the Profs’ last run on a single by junior second baseman Frank Galeota.

Ford, who last week lost a tough 2-1 decision against NJAC foe Richard Stockton College, went seven-plus innings, allowing five runs (four earned), 10 hits and one walk. He struck out four in falling to 3-3, despite an outstanding 2.92 ERA.

The Scarlet Raptors opened their week with a Senior Night 9-4 victory over Catholic University at Campbell’s Field, April 26.

Prior to the game, the team honored seniors Paul DeMarco (Mullica Hill, NJ/Clearview Regional), Pat Jankowski (Delran, NJ/Delran), Brandon Kaplan (Cherry Hill, NJ/Cherry Hill West), Ed McDonnell (Marlton, NJ/Cherokee), Novella, Roach, Jim Slade (Williamstown, NJ/Williamstown), Ulmer and Michael Wunderler (Blue Anchor, NJ/St. Joseph-Hammonton).

Kaplan earned his first career start in the contest and combined with Jankowski, Wunderler and DeMarco on a five-hitter with one walk and one hit batsman in the game, which lasted 3:01 and included four errors by each team. Rutgers-Camden also collected eight hits and took advantage of seven walks and two hit batsmen by a trio of Catholic pitchers.

Wunderler (1-1) earned the victory, hurling 1-1/3 perfect innings to follow Kaplan (1-1/3 innings, one hit, one earned run, one walk and one strikeout) and Jankowski (4-1/3 innings, two hits, two runs, one earned and two strikeouts). DeMarco finished the game with two innings, allowing two hits and one unearned run. He struck out three.

Catholic took a 1-0 lead in the second inning on a leadoff home run by junior center fielder Jorge Wynne. The Cardinals added a run in the fourth when junior right fielder Joseph Benedetti doubled, advanced on an error and scored on a double play ball.

Rutgers-Camden tied the game with a two-run fifth which featured a walk, a hit batsman, a throwing error by losing pitcher Joseph Voiro and a sacrifice fly by Jakubowski.

Catholic grabbed a 3-2 lead in the sixth on a double by freshman second baseman Matthew Rosner and a throwing error by Jankowski on a sacrifice bunt by senior John Schmidt.

Rutgers-Camden bounced back with a two-run sixth to take the lead for good. That wild frame, which started with a one-out single by sophomore catcher Tom Terrill (Sewell, NJ/Washington Township), included two walks, a wild pitch, an error and a two-run single to left by Slade.

The Raptors added a pair of runs in the seventh, aided by an RBI double by Roach and a run-scoring single by Turekian. After Catholic cut the gap to 6-4 on Wynne’s RBI single in the eight, Rutgers-Camden put the game away with three runs in the bottom of the eighth. The frame included an RBI triple by Straga, a run-scoring wild pitch and an RBI single by McDonnell. McDonnell’s hit scored Jakubowski, who reached on a single to extend his hitting streak to 10 games.

Roach had a pair of hits for the Raptors, while Wynne and Benedetti each had two of the five Catholic hits.


Thur., April 28 at Penn Relays

Women’s 4x100 relay (Heat 11): 1. St. Joseph’s, 48.23; 2. Rutgers-Camden, 50.10; 3. Widener University, 50.33; 4. Towson University, 50.68.

Fri., April 29 at Penn Relays

Men’s 4x400 relay (Heat 10): 1. Saint Paul’s, 3:25.67; 2. Westfield State, 3:29.87; 3. Methodist, 3:30.40; 4. Alfred State, 3:31.37; 5. Howard CC, 3:32.37; 6. Thaddeus Stevens State, 3:35.31; 7. Queensboro CC, 3:35.51; 8. Rutgers-Camden, 3:42.64.

Sat., April 30 at Lions Invitational (The College of New Jersey)

No team scores

Rutgers-Camden winners:
* Tameka Jackson, 100 M, 12.57
* Tameka Jackson, 200 M, 26.28

Sat., May 7 at NJAC Championships (Richard Stockton College) 11 a.m.

The Rutgers-Camden women’s 4x100 relay team finished second in its heat at the Penn Relays April 28, posting a time of 50.10.

The Raptors finished behind St. Joseph’s University (48.23) and ahead of Widener University (50.33), Towson University (50.68) and Queensborough Community College (50.72).

The relay team included junior Carmen Zimmitt (Woodstown, NJ/Woodstown), freshman Imani Hafiz (Franklinville, NJ/Delsea), senior Tiffany Logan (Washington Township, NJ/Washington Township) and senior All-American Tameka Jackson (Camden, NJ/Sterling).

The Rutgers University-Camden men’s 4x400 relay team finished last in its heat at the Penn Relays April 29, posting a time of 3:42.64.

The Raptors finished eighth in the heat won by Saint Paul’s in a time of 3:25.67. Rutgers-Camden finished 7.13 seconds behind seventh-place Queensborough Community College.

The relay team included junior Chris McGowan (Barrington, NJ/Gloucester Catholic), freshman Darryl Mendillo (Galloway, NJ/Absegami) and seniors Matthew Weng (Lakehurst, NJ/Shawnee) and Taiwan Lamb (Atlantic City, NJ/Atlantic City).

Jackson had a field day April 30 in the Lions Invitational at The College of New Jersey, capturing both the 100- and 200-meter dashes and anchoring the third-place 4x100 relay team.

There were no team scores at the event.

Jackson posted a time of 12.57 in winning the 100-meter dash, which included four other Lady Raptors: Zimmitt, Hafiz, junior Ashley Wright (Pennsauken, NJ/Pennsauken) and junior Nafeesa Yusuff (Vineland, NJ/Vineland). Zimmitt finished sixth (13.04), Hafiz was seventh (13.15), Wright placed 12th (13.68) and Yusuff was 17th (13.89).

Jackson also captured the 200-meter dash in 26.28.

Senior Joelle Diener (Rickenbach, Switzerland/Kantonsschule Olten) also became the first Lady Raptor to compete in the 3,000-meter steeplechase, thus setting a new school standard. She finished third in a time of 12:15.35.

Logan also finished sixth in the 100-meter high hurdles (16.89), while senior Sarah Roberts (Pittsgrove, NJ/Schalick) finished 31st in the 5,000 meters in a time of 21:46.90.

Zimmitt, Hafiz, Logan and Jackson also finished third in the 4x100 relay race, posting a time of 49.39.

Wright also finished fifth in the long jump (16-05), while Logan was 12th (14-05.25) in that event.

Zimmitt and Hafiz finished fourth and fifth in the triple jump, respectively, with jumps of 34-02.75 and 34-01.25, respectively.

In the field events, sophomore Donna Kirk (Washington Township, NJ/Washington Township) finished 15th in the shot put (32-3) and ninth in the discus (106-3), while freshman Jill Cardone (Erial, NJ/Timber Creek) was 22nd in the javelin (84-07).

On the men’s side, Lamb finished 18th in the 100-meter dash (12.07), while junior Tyrell McGraw (Hammonton, NJ/Edgewood) was 26th at 12.60. Lamb was 21st in the 200-meter dash (24.85), while McGraw finished 26th (26.26).

In the men’s 400-meter dash, sophomore Yaw Karikari (Iselin, NJ/Elmwood Park Memorial) finished 18th at 53.93. Mendillo finished 21st at 55.89.

McGowan finished 40th in the 800-meter run (2:11.86), while Weng was fifth in the 400-meter intermediate hurdles (58.82).



May 7 at Mid-Atlantic Collegiate Crew Championships (Occoquan, VA)
May 13-14 at Dad Vail Regatta (Schuylkill River, Philadelphia, PA)

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